One of my roommates is taking a product design course and the cool ergo (-nomics, not “therefore”) things he’s making reminded me of Luigi Colani. As a result, I’ve been more frequently looking through his (relatively) new monograph, Colani: The Art of Shaping the Future. Of course, we all know Colani is amazing, and It pleases me to say that this book does him and his career justice. Spanning from 1953 to 2003, The Art of Shaping the Future is incredibly ambitious. Lush, full page pictures document the process of design from napkin sketch to completion, covering everything from cigarette lighters to airplane cockpits to…architecture.
Like most of his work, Colani’s architecture is based on the basic forms of nature. Specifically, he envisions a “biomorphic city configured like a human being.” where “individual organisms” generate additional organic architecture projects. The result looks pretty much like what it sounds like. The Future a la Hanna Barbarra. None of his vast city proposals were ever built, but many of the ideas remain relevant today. UPDATE: whoops…check out The Rotor House.
It’s pretty inspiring when you see objects – objects that sadly haven’t changed much over the last 50 years – seen through the eyes of this incredible designer. A piano for instance, becomes something almost unrecognizable. I think I read somewhere that Prince has one of these. I’ve always said if something’s good enough for Prince, its good enough for EVERYONE ON EARTH. If for no other reason, check this book out because it looks damn sexy on a coffee table…and girls will think you’re cool when they see in in your apt.
I can’t really guarantee that last part.